MAN-woman

When reading the short story “Good Country People,” by Flannery O’Connor, I became uneasy towards the ending; The MAN-woman binary in the excerpt clearly highlights the discrimination towards women in the real world.

In the passage, a man who claims he is selling Bibles takes advantage of Joy, a woman with a plastic leg. He steals her leg and she is unable to fight back, losing an important part of her life and regular functionality. This scene has an underlying message: many women aren’t able to use their full potential because it is taken from them with sexism; they are often seen as less than men. The loss of Joy’s leg symbolizes her inability to “get ahead” in the real world. It also highlights the fact that many women are unfairly taken advantage of and have no satisfaction of punishing the perpetrator.

Although Flannery did not specifically state this, it reminded me that the man to woman and binary is evident in society. We have a lot of work to do with many unjust binaries. This is just a very unique way of looking at the scene.

Inevitable Kill

The last line of the short story “Escape From Spiderhead” reads, “I had not killed, and I never would” (pg 81). I find this line very interesting because it was inevitable Jeff would to kill someone. He had to choose between killing himself and Rachel. Either way, the story would have a dark ending. He ended up committing suicide and sparing Rachel’s life, but he did end up killing someone-himself. It seems as if the “Spiderhead” is a murder mission. The experiments that are forced upon prisoners are extremely dangerous, and Abnesti knows that death is a possible outcome. I think it is much worse than a longer period in jail.